After rehabbing a pinched meniscus since December, I was ready to ski again. I left yesterday morning and hoped to hit the slopes by noon. I missed last weekend’s champagne powder and planned to make up for it. Then I hit a giant snag. With snow flying and road closures I had to make a snap decision.
BUT my drive up to the mountains soon became a Wild One. The Eisenhower Tunnel closed due to a power outage. GAHHHHHH! I-70 is the main artery from the Front Range, (including Boulder and Denver) to the high country and epic mountain ski areas. There have been several major and unprecedented avalanches in the last few days.
Avalanches occur when snowstorms during cold temperatures bring light powder in feet to the mountains. But when temperatures rise and subsequent blizzards dump more feet of heavy snow on top, the light powdery snow underneath becomes unstable. Any slopes over 30 degrees can slide. We’ve had several in the I-70 corridor and March is our snowiest month! Lots more to come.
The driving app, Waze, told me to take a frontage road to avoid the standstill.
I followed this ice truck most of the way to Breck. Ironic or what?
When that traffic became a standstill near the Fraser exit, I thought for sure the state troopers would make me turn around. I really didn’t want to drive back home to wait it out.
I rolled down my window and told her I was heading up to Breckenridge.
“You have to drive north over Berthoud Pass and head to Kremmling. Then take Highway 9 to Silverthorne.”
It was 10:30. And just like that, remaining 45 minutes of my drive became three hours.
Such a bummer. Would I get to ski? My chances were becoming slimmer by the mile, especially when a car in front of the ice truck slowed to 20 MPH.
By the time I arrived in Breckenridge it was 2:00. I couldn’t believe the amount of snow! 62 inches in seven days, not counting the almost 2 feet that fell today. Roxy tried to walk outside the door and it appeared to have been shoveled recently!
We do have a snow plow guy. I called him about the snowy driveway and he said he plowed twice today. Amazing. I barely made it in and had to shovel to drive into the garage.
Then I looked at the deck.
When I opened up the shade, I laughed out loud!
Oh, no!! Do I ski or do I shovel? There’s so much work to be done.
I stood in front of the stove and stared at the clock. I remembered my WOTY, change. I considered changing into my ski clothes to go skiing. It was already 2:40 and the ski area would close at 4:00. It would be easy to find parking this late in the day and there wouldn’t be a line for gondola to the mountain. Would it be worth skiing for a half hour? I decide to go for it.
I got to the top of Peak 8 in record time and skied a couple of runs. Then it was time to shovel. Every time I read that line, I let out a sigh.
As the sun set over the mountains, I dug in and shoveled for a while. I can’t wait to hit first chair tomorrow!
How much risk are you willing to take? Do you go for it even though most of the day is over? Would you have turned back to go home or taken the long road over the pass?
TOMORROW: A Secret Project will take the Wild Ride to a whole new level!